Remember Tamagotchis? The handheld digital pet that was on every kid’s wish list during the Christmas of 1998?

Engaging and retaining a loyal social media base on a single platform is a bit like trying to convince your twelve year old self not to ditch your precious pixelated Japanese character for a Furby. Or a Gameboy. Or any other tech-based entertainment which doesn’t involve sweeping up digital poo.

Point being, keeping your audience engaged and interested on a visual platform like Instagram can be difficult, particularly if your typical work day involves a desk, a computer screen and minimal variation in scenery. New social media platforms of the moment, (think Snapchat and Vine) offer alternatives that can be difficult to compete with.

Here’s a few tips on how you can shake up your newsfeed every so often to make sure your followers are still awake – and extend your reach while you’re at it.

Total takeover

Do you see a high fashion catwalk show and think local government? No. Us neither. But the Local Government Association of Queensland has recently capitalized on a social media trend with its roots in high fashion and leading brands – Instagram takeovers.

While it may not be exactly like Elle Fanning or Kristen Dunst hijacking high fashion label Rodarte’s Instagram account for a week, giving Queensland councils the opportunity to take control of the LGAQ’s Instagram feed for a day is a great way to showcase the diverse roles and responsibilities of Queensland local government, and their natural environments.

Redland City Council was the first cab off the rank for our #LGAQtakeover series, sharing pictures from a typical day at council and in the Redlands community – coffee, libraries, art galleries and mayoral meetings. 

Next up is McKinlay Shire Council on September 22nd. The north-west Queensland outback shire is home to the Julia Creek Dirt ‘n’ Dust festival and 40,880 square kilometres of big sky country. Talk about #nofilter.

Instagram takeovers are a fun way to shake up your newsfeed with some fresh pictures and a new perspective. They neatly negate the barriers of your four office walls and allow you focus on different or unique aspects of your core business.

Nice to Instameet you

The practice of an ‘Instameet’- gatherings of people coming together to connect in a photogenic location to snap pics and share – has risen in popularity of late.

The folks behind the ‘Queensland’ Instagram account, Tourism and Events Queensland are hosting what they have modestly termed the ‘Biggest Instameet in the World’ at various locations across the state during the October long weekend. The hashtag #thisisqueensland is also used by this gang of social media loving happy snappers to share and aggregate pictures of diverse Queensland scenery.

They’ve also been hosting ‘Instagram 101’ workshops across Queensland open to tourism operators, local photographers and anyone in the local community interested in learning more about the platform.

Join in a local Instameet – or throw your own!

#inspo

Draw inspiration from the rest of the online community. Did you know there’s a popular hashtag #thingsorganisedneatly? Or that #throwbackthursday makes it OK to share photographs of staff members taken during the eighties?

Regram (with credits) interesting and relevant photos from your followers – they’ll feel valued and you’ll have fresh content. Win-win!

Take some time to think outside the box and brainstorm how you can make your pics stand out from the pack. The Instagram blog is a wonderful way to find inspiration.

Avoid…

Text heavy posts, unfunny memes, too many photos of meetings or attendees gathered at events, using any of the following hashtags: #follow4follow, #like4like, #instafollow. Let’s keep it cool, people.

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